‘We felt nauseous’: Family finds cigarette butt in packaged chicken from supermarket

Oded Chen from Karmiel says his daughters no longer want to eat chicken; factory acknowledges it could be responsible, apologizes for ‘distress’

An illustrative photo of a cigarette but from January 2017. (Flash90)
An illustrative photo of a cigarette but from January 2017. (Flash90)

A man from northern Israel received an unwanted surprise after his weekly grocery shopping — a cigarette butt in his chicken.

Karmiel resident Oded Chen said he found the discarded cigarette in a package of pullet he bought from the local Rami Levy, a national supermarket chain.

The cigarette butt was apparently left with the chicken during packaging.

“I was a cook for 20 years and I’ve never seen something like this,” Chen told Channel 12 news.

He said he noticed the cigarette butt while preparing dinner for his daughters.

“We felt nauseous,” he recalled. “My daughters don’t want to eat chicken anymore. We lost our whole appetite.”

Illustrative: Chickens are displayed for sale at a supermarket in Jerusalem’s Talpiot neighborhood, September 2009. (Abir Sultan/Flash90)

He insisted the cigarette butt was already in the sealed package. According to Chen, customer service suggested otherwise when he contacted them.

“They are trying to cause me to feel as if I put it in there. What, am I bored?” he said.

Hod Hefer, the factory where the chicken was packed, touted its strict production ordinances but acknowledged it may be the source of the cigarette butt.

“We cannot definitively rule out that a foreign object indeed may be found in the product in question,” it said in response.

The factory said it has never received a similar complaint while apologizing to Chen for “the distress” he suffered.

“We pledge to do everything necessary so a case like this does not happen in the future and we promise our customers the production of quality products at the highest level of hygiene,” it added.

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